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What is Special Event Server Certification?

The Special Event Server or SES course is British Columbia's mandatory self-study course for serving alcohol at special events. The course provides information on legal responsibilities and effective techniques for recognizing intoxication and preventing problems related to over-service. The SES course is administered by go2HR - BC's tourism industry human resource association.

Who Needs to take the Special Event Server course?

If you are hosting an event that requires a Special Event Permit, all servers both paid and un-paid serving at the event must be SES certified regardless of the number of event attendees. Managers and Special Event Permit holders for events with less than 500 people are also required to take the SES course. For anyone currently holding a valid Serving It Right Certification there is NO need to also complete the SES course.

Do I need to take Serving It Right?

With any event larger than 500 attendees all managers and Special Event Permit holders must take Serving It Right. For a complete list of those requiring a Special Event Server Certificate OR Serving It Right Certificate, and also for those exempted from this requirement (ie: having an out-of-province responsible beverage service certificate), please see: What Certification do I need? For the Serving It Right Course, click here.

How do I get a Special Event Server Certificate?

Certification is obtained by taking the SES course and passing an exam. The online program, which takes approximately 1 hour, is convenient and offers quizzes and interactive features to help you learn the materials. Have a calculator on hand to help you with some of the course content. The cost is $20 and you will receive your test results immediately. Upon successful completion, you can also print out your SES certificate right away.

Does my SES Certificate Expire?

As of September 15, 2015 all SES Certificates will come printed with a 5 year expiry date from completion. All SES Certificates completed prior to this date will be deemed to have expired on September 15, 2020.

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